Do you often find yourself drowning deep into the infinite river of to-do lists and projects?
Is it difficult for you to keep track of all the projects that are running in your department?
If so, you’re suffering from a condition known as, ‘always-on-deadline’. The disease is quite common among large-scale corporations. This happens when the manager or the employee fails to prioritize work based on urgency.
Urgency is the number one predator of good work. Yes, there are deadlines that need urgent attention. If you don’t heed these deadlines, they will turn into a monster and haunt you night after night. Unless you learn how to be more productive without any more time; It is time for a change.
Deadline alone is a scary word. The word brings shivers into the whole body.
Research at Missouri Western State University found that urgency allows more room for mistakes. Busyness is a strange illusion. It blindfolds you from seeing beyond what is happening behind the scenes; The ultimate productivity killer.
Robert Trumble – a professor at Virginia Commonwealth University says, ‘When urgency strikes, it often paralyzes the decision-making ability which results in wrong decisions.’
Start using four-quadrant matrix
In the book, first things First, Stephen Covey convinced that all projects are not necessarily deadline-oriented. Some require value and purpose.
With a four-quadrant matrix, you’ll be able to prioritize all the tasks based on their level of urgency.
Prioritize by doing the things that are urgent and important. These are in the first quadrant. Next, move to the second quadrant. If you divide your tasks and put them in their respective quadrant, it will be easy for you to prioritize each task.
2) Do less – Delegate a lot
You cannot do everything yourself. Even if you know how to do it.
If you use Taskque, you’ll be able to prioritize your projects and finish them on time.
One good feature about TaskQue is that it uses a queue to assign tasks to idle resources. In this way, the full potential of every employee is utilized. If you try to be the Jack of all trades, it will be more effort than it is worth.
Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone. Do only those things which cannot be done without your involvement. For everything else, delegate!
3) Try to do MITS first
Before you start your day, it is advised to do the Most Important TaskS first.
Take a few tasks every day and apply the MITS strategy to them. You can take one task or more than one. You only need to plan your tasks so that urgent tasks get prioritized first.
When you schedule your tasks as per priority, it will give you more room to fit in the extra tasks in your list.
4) Find the 20% task first
It is said that the most successful people invest time in the top 20% of things. This helps them to generate 80% of results.
Find out that 20 % of things that are giving the maximum benefit to your business. For instance, if you must do three tasks, cut down on the two tasks that are less important right now. Meaning they are not urgent. Now invest all your energy in that one task. When done right, this will benefit your business in the long-haul.
Filtering out your non-productive tasks is tough, but it’s a good way to realize which tasks provide the biggest value.
5) Implement the Result Optimization Model
This is my personal favorite deadline management hack. Each deadline comes with its unique set of challenges, and to deal with those challenges, I’ve divided each deadline in three parts.
- Generation of an idea (G)
- Idea consolidation (C)
- Selection and implementation of that idea (I)
Before you start working on any new deadline. Take some time to follow these three steps. Start by brainstorming ideas. Next, consolidate those ideas at a single place. And finally, select the best possible solution which can work for you.
To wrap it all up. You cannot do everything yourself. Start your day with a to-do list. Divide your tasks in the four-quadrant matrix. Prioritize the tasks with MITS, and finally, use the result optimization model to finalize the solution of the problem.